I have a pretty good mandolin for playing American fiddle tunes and bluegrass/newgrass type music. But with heavy gauge strings and a thick pick I find it very awkward to play trad up to speed. (Especially reels with all those single-note picked triplets....)
I fitted light strings to my old crafter and have been using a much thinner pick and now I'm getting somewhere. : ) I' thinking about getting a high quality mandolin specifically for playing trad. Joe Foley lives here in Dublin. Anyone play one of his mandolins? Does he only build flat top mandos, or does he build carved top mandos as well? Is there a work shop you can visit to try them out? What kind of prices do his mandos sell for? What wood does he use? Lots of questions, sorry. Thanks!